Antioxidant Compound, with Aid of Baker’s Yeast, May Offer Oral Supplement to Offset Alzheimer’s

Antioxidant Compound, with Aid of Baker’s Yeast, May Offer Oral Supplement to Offset Alzheimer’s
A natural compound with antioxidative properties that might help to delay the onset of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's can now be produced in baker's yeast, a study reports. This new way of producing ergothioneine, as the compound is known, may lead to a commercially viable new treatment for people with a range of neurodegenerative diseases. The study, “Engineering the Yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae for the Production of L-(+)-Ergothioneine,” was published in the journal Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology. Ergothioneine (ERG) is an unusual but naturally occurring antioxidant that can ease or prevent the cellular stress associated with neurodegenerative diseases. People cannot naturally produce ERG, but acquire it from their diet. This compound is mainly produced by enzymes in bacteria and fungi, and plants are thought to take from the soil ERG excreted by fungi. Previous studies have shown that individuals with certain neurodegenerative diseases have significantly lower blood levels of ERG than others. Studies in animal models also suggest that ERG might prevent the onset of diseases such as Alzheimer's and dementia. Alzheimer’s patients could potentially benefit by taking ERG as a dietary supplement, much as people do with vitamins. "Because of the beneficial effects and possible involvement of ERG in disease, ergothioneine may potentially prove its value in the global dietary supplement market, which was estimated at some $241.1 billion in 2019. Currently, commercial ergothioneine is extra
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